Evolution of consciousness

“Philosophy gains by finding some absolute in the moving world of phenomena. But we too shall gain in our feeling of greater joy and strength. Greater joy because the reality invented before our eyes will give each of us, unceasingly, some of the satisfaction which art gives at rare intervals to the privileged; it will reveal to us, beyond the fixity and monotony which our senses, hypnotized by constant need, at first perceived in it, ever-recurring novelty, the moving originality of things. But above all we shall have greater strength, for we shall feel that we are participating, creators of ourselves, in the great work of creation… By getting hold of itself, our ability to act will become intensified. Until now humbled in an attitude of obedience, slaves of vaguely-felt natural necessities, we shall stand once more erect.”

“An intelligent being bears within itself the means to transcend its own nature.”

“Now, the more we fix our attention on this continuity of life, the more we see that organic evolution resembles the evolution of a consciousness, in which the past pushing into the present causes a new form of awareness, incommensurable with what went before.”

Henri Bergson
from Le Pensée et le mouvant (1934) and L’Évolution créatrice (1907)